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Vintage Grillo by Jerry Grillo

This compilation of tracks from Milwaukee based jazz singer Jerry Grillo is pleasant enough, featuring solid renditions of popular classics. Culled from six earlier releases, Grillo is backed by various different groups all of whom acquit themselves at least competently. The keyboard chair seems always to be filled with an excellent player; particularly outstanding are Dean Rolando, Lynne Arriale & Barry Velleman who provide excellent solos on "Get Out of Town," "Goody for You" and "On the Street Where You Live," respectively. The tracks featuring the Nick Courtorno Jazz Orchestra are played flawlessly, though the charts they are working from suffer somewhat from a lack of imagination.

Ultimately the success or failure of a record like this hinges on the performance of the singer, and Grillo more often than not delivers. His voice is sturdy but unspectacular, mostly using a plain delivery with a minimum of vibrato. At his best, he captures the essence of the lyric as on the taunting "Goody" and "I've Got the World on a String," which shows a little more range and exuberance than most of the balance of the collection. There's nothing revelatory here, but this would be a good enough soundtrack to a couple rounds of martinis.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Jerry Grillo
  • CD Title: Vintage Grillo
  • Genre: Jazz Vocals
  • Year Released: 2003
  • Record Label: HockeyJazz
  • Rating: Three Stars
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